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Rapsody, Thank H.E.R. Now

Even with the recent success of Nicki Minaj—and, maybe, because of that success—Rapsody’s task is a tough one. How does a female make a name for herself in what remains a male-dominated music? With the release of her free album Thank H.E.R. Now, the North Carolina femcee’s method is clear: Remain honest by telling her own story over soulful production.

The subtitle found on the album’s cover, “Culture Over Everything,” gives an early clue as to what to expect. Rapsody discusses her upbringing, influences and love for hip-hop over choppy basslines and soul samples provided by 9th Wonder, Khrysis, Nottz and more. She brings along plenty of guests to help paint the picture, as well, as Raekwon, Phonte, Big K.R.I.T, Mac Miller, Murs, Jean Grae, and Marsha Ambrosious all make appearances.

The Amp produced “Top Five,” with the chorus sampling Lox members Jadakiss and Styles P, and the verses displaying the lyrical chops of Rapsody, King Mez, and Laws, is an early ear-grabber. The song works not only because the three come correct with the bars, but also because their three distinct sounds compliment one another on the record. Rapsody’s wordplay is a key throughout. “No fault of mine, I’m a winner, Sammy Sosa/You went from a star to not mentioned, Ed Cota,” she delivers on the Estelle featured “Fly Girl Power!” Her picking apart of the plight of the intelligent southern rapper on the soothing “Lampin’” shines, as well.

Unfortunately, the offering ultimately loses steam, as it drags on before coming to a close. This is not particularly a knock on the tail-end of the release—in fact, “So Be It” bolstered by Big K.R.I.T.’s countrified flavor and the 9th Wonder produced, Raekwon assisted “Black Diamonds” are quite strong and appear near the end. Any project that clocks in at 20 tracks and an hour and twenty minutes, though, is risking losing its listener somewhere along the way.

Even so, Rapsody has proven with Thank H.E.R. Now that it may be time to do just that. —Adam Fleischer

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  • wat

    So your only problem was that it was too long? Sounds like BS to me.

    Rapsody for 2012 freshman though.

  • AT&T


  • Anonymous

    All this tape gets is an L, seriously? Why? What’s the real reason, cuz Im not buyin this “it’s too long” bs. This was a great album. Rapsody made a believer out of me with this one. Lookin forward to hearing more from her.

  • http://www.xxlmag.com/reviews/2011/06/rapsody-thank-h-e-r-now/ b

    you guys have to realize that they give everyone except eminem and lil wayne a L

  • ross burrell

    people complain when albums are too short and now when they are too long…jamla is now releasing albums with at least 15 to 20 tracks…and its freeeeeeeee!!!! granted not every track is a banger but very few albums are

  • T

    What??? Laws’ Yesterday’s Future got the same ratings on the scale but that got a XL and this gets an L? What???

  • V

    Cut it out with the too long bs… this album is SO SOLID!!!! and deserves at least a XL…gt foh… and gtfot(there) and listen to it again!!! Rapsody for 2012 Freshmen!!!

  • ant

    it drags on? really? i have no idea how you give this a L rating. good features + good number of tracks + good production = XXL… like said before, ppl complain when albums arent long enough. she pretty much gave the world 2 FREE albums filled with dopeness. smh..

  • http://twitter.com/SLOTCHMUSIC ms_spittuh

    Not too many chicks can keep up with the Chef. Solute! =)

    • http://www.sykoticfiles.wordpress.com $yk

      word is bond ms…all I’m going to say is those who are lurking don’t be swayed by Adam’s rating and go find the download link and support this young lady Rapsody, she has “it” and deserves the accolades.

  • britt

    WTF???? All she gets is an L for this mixtape?? You know what? Fuck XXL MAG! yall corny as fuck. smfh. Her lyrics are XXL yet you can put lil b on here and say he is XXL?? pah! you guys are the laugh!


    Def should of got a higher rating, and lyrics are amazing, what the hell is XXL thinking??? I agree with the comment “If it aint Lil Wayne Or Eminem u get an L” hahah true.

  • http://www.rossnuman.com Ross

    I love the CD!!!! Im glad someone came out with real music instead of talking about how much money you got or my favorite taking about clothes they cant spell… Rap your lyrics are real tru…I love “So Be It” ….im from the South…South Carolina so I know what you are talking about…

  • Rapsody is a Star Wars nerd lol

    Ultimatley being a fan of anything is not cool. iBar’s got the antidote to fagdom, I mean fandom.

    iBar – iFan
    iBar – Smashing Skit



  • rah

    BULL SHIT! XXL is sexist.

  • Adam Fleischer Daddy

    FUCK YOU Adam Fleischer FUCK YOU!!!!!! What the fuck do you know about hip-hop you fucking cocksucker!!!!! L rating my fucking ass get the fuck outta here nigga!